The overnight session in North America began with a number of questions. The solar wind was in excess of 600 km/s and the Bz was southerly. At 0132z I saw an abrupt end to the massive QRSS6 signal of “MP” which had been present in the waterfall all day long for many stations around North America. As it turns out these unsettled conditions seem to have helped lower latitude signals by “stirring things up” in the ionosphere. While heavy QSB was reported at higher latitudes by stations like Larry, W7IUV / WH2XGP, I, along with Doug, K4LY / WH2XZO, experienced really strong conditions, particularly on the lateral East / West path. Doug sent this comprehensive report:
Note that in the first sentence, the call sign suffix listed as “XPP to XXP” should be corrected to “XXP to XGP” for WH2XXP and WH2XGP, respectively.
As we will see, the higher latitude paths did not fare so well, with high absorption but if those signals were capable of moving south, they probably did well, referencing Doug’s report for John, WA3ETD / WG2XKA.
As mentioned earlier, VE3OT’s “MP” running QRSS6 was quite visible through the day, fading out within a few moments once absorption began to spike.
Doug, K4LY / WH2XZO, operated a CW beacon 100 Hz away from “MP” during the North American afternoon but received no reports. This signal was not observed in Texas.
WSPRnet reported 81 MF WSPR stations at 0200z. Two new (or newer) stations were observed through this session including AL7RF, who had 16 reports and WD0AKX, who had 94 reports. Welcome aboard and do come again!
Daytime WSPR activity was good through this session and seems to coincide with high solar wind speeds in the late afternoon in North America (this of course seems counter intuitive). John, WA3ETD / WG2XKA, had daytime reports of his 1-watt ERP signal from Andy, KU4XR, at a distance of 1290 km.
Regional and continental WSPR breakdowns follow:
There were no trans-African reports through this session, although Michel, FR5ZX, was present. Ed, VP9GE, in Bermuda was also present but had no reports. There were no stations present from the Canary Islands.
AA1A provided trans-Atlantic reports for DK7FC:
In the Caribbean, Eden, ZF1EJ, and Roger, ZF1RC, are both hearing very well, with both reporting Larry, W7IUV / WH2XGP, and Eden additionally reporting Merv, K9FD/KH6 / WH2XCR.
In Alaska, Laurence, KL7L / WE2XPQ, experienced another power outage overnight. Hopefully the diesel generator is holding out as this problem is starting to be an epidemic in his area. Fortunately the temperatures have been unseasonably warm. KL7L was once again designated for receive only.
In the Pacific, Merv, K9FD/KH6 / WH2XCR, was reported by JA1NQI-1 and KL7L before the power failure in Alaska. The path to VK2XGJ appears to be cut off and may be a function of the increase solar wind and the southerly path to VK from KH6.
Other anecdotes, statistics, comments or information:
Ken, K5DNL / WG2XXM, reports that my station was spotting his WSPR at +22 db S/N this morning at a distance of about 200 miles.
Jim, W5EST, provided the following session profile for Don, W5OR / WD2XSH/15:
Don WD2XSH/15 operates mostly 630 meter WSPR transmit mode from his QTH near Little Rock, Arkansas. Don obtained and modified an NDB transmitter (airport MF non-directional beacon) for 630 meters. His antenna is draped in a long, high loop north through thick woods, and his EIRP may be about 50 milliwatts (estimated by Jim w5est) as of this January month. Thanks to his central USA geographic location, his WSPR signal provides a continual weak signal beacon for probing nighttime propagation.
Don’s QTH completes a geographic triangle with WG2XIQ near Dallas, Texas, and WG2XXM east of Oklahoma City that can help you do receive-antenna testing and propagation measurements in USA regions situated at most compass headings from XSH/15. Steve VE7SL has reported the most distant spots of XSH/15, the latest on Jan. 11, -28dB 0502z, 2958 kilometers away.
Locally, Don’s strong XSH/15 ground wave on storm-free days into w5est only 16 kilometers away shows seasonally how much that leaf cover and tree sap can increasingly supply EIRP absorption between subfreezing winter and early summer. The absorption accumulates over first half year by about 15 dB beyond January’s level and goes down again the second half of the year. Request absorption estimates by season when you need them if you want to down-adjust the 50mw.
Across a single day or a single night, however, the XSH/15 signal strength is nearly constant. That means, when distant storms do cross the USA mid-South region, SNR variations in the ground wave signal reveal band noise-level variations locally over many hours. You can use a strong local 630m ground wave station this way in your area
Here’s the XSH/15 profile sampled at mostly medium-distance receivers:
Additions, corrections, clarifications, etc? Send me a message on the Contact page!